Mother Ghana is suffering a heart attack, because leadership is the centre or integral part of development and yet we fumble in that aspect. There cannot be development if a country is in a leadership crisis. Ghana’s problem is not institutional challenge or weak institutions rather poor leadership which has resulted in poor productivity.
I must say we have all the necessary institutions and structures to harness development in the country yet we are struggling to develop. Let us not fail our future generation by allowing politics to blind fold us.
How do you feel as a Ghanaian? Do you feel let down by your leaders (at the local, regional, or national levels)? How do you feel whenever the name of any of them (past or present) is mentioned? Agitated or elated? These are disturbing questions whose answers may sadden the individual. Our country lacks effective leadership, and the truth about it must be told. Whether it is the Head of State, political appointees, chiefs, or church leaders, there is always cause for concern.
Be a Leader not a Boss
We are in a country where most people see themselves as bosses instead of leaders. Leaders serve their subordinates with humility and always consult the view of their members or subordinates while Bosses are always full of themselves and want their subordinates to serve them. They will never consult, thinking their subordinates do not have any brilliant contribution. The fact that you are the head or superior does not mean you know it all and have all the bright ideas. This is one of the reasons Ghana is still struggling to develop; most of them are not leaders but bosses.
It is no exaggeration to say that over the years, we have not had the kind of leadership that will stimulate the citizens and mobilise the country’s abundant human and natural resources for progress. We are still underdeveloped and ravaged by corruption, nepotism, and tribal politics because, we lack effective leadership to redirect our energies to better use. It is due to greedy and selfishness because, if all those in key positions in the country behave as leaders by having the desire to develop the Country development would have sky rocketed. Leaders consult subordinates to seek their views on how to work together to achieve the common goal.
The mark of a good leader is not how much physical presence he establishes on the national political landscape but how much of his good leadership qualities he infuses in those working with him and those to succeed him. In several respects, almost all of our leaders have fallen far short of the mark. The institutions are there but the leaders are failing to work therefore we do not get the necessary productivity.
Instead of leaders to supervise and ensure employees are working, they would rather prefer to be the boss by sitting in his or her office expecting secretaries to bring documents for you to sign. Seriously, you sit at your office the whole day to sign documents and at the end you are being paid huge sums of money.
Team Work results higher Productivity
As leaders, because you are to serve Ghanaians, you need to visit various line managers, ask them of their challenges or problems they are being confronted with and how best you all can address it. Various line managers should also engage with workers or subordinates to know their challenges and how best they can all address it. If the leaders in various institutions work this way, there will be huge productivity which will bring the needed revenue. Doing this will make employees or subordinates part of the decision making process so they will always do their best so as to deliver because, he or she is part of how they could address the challenges or problems together. Therefore, now that it has been addressed, the subordinate has to deliver. Leaders must provide admirable leadership qualities worth emulating.
A good leader ensures that subordinates are groomed to take over from him or her to ensure continuity in the implementation of the good policies they set together. It is rather hurting to know we are in a country where leaders fail subordinates because they are bosses and have decided not to leave for someone to take over, those who will leave would decide not to render any advice or help to the successor to succeed in order not for people say your successor did better than you.
Not only have our leaders failed to provide inspiration but they have also killed it. Instead of supporting and facilitating the grooming of anybody with leadership qualities who succeeded, the incumbent leader sees him as a threat and does everything possible to hound him out of contention.
To narrow it to Ghanaian politics, Capable people who would otherwise have been in positions of trust shy away because they consider Ghanaian politics as dirty and don’t want their hard-earned reputation to be toyed with and dragged in the mud. Aside that, due to the fact that they are blind folded with partisan politics, they will decide not appoint the person who is capable for the job because, the person is not in his party. I applaud Akuffo Addo for taking that giant decision of appointing Martin Amidu as Special Prosecutor even though they are not in the same party colour. It is unusual for it to happen in Ghana.
Institutional capacity-building and leadership training exists mostly in the rhetoric of officialdom.
We need leadership by example. In times when our leaders abuse their offices to amass wealth at the expense of the national economy, they will not inspire any Ghanaian to serve the country conscientiously. Our leaders have to do more than they have been doing so far. Ghanaians need leaders who will inspire them to build the country. The country has all it takes to develop and our leaders need to complement the efforts of the ordinary Ghanaian tax-payer whose sacrifices are the lifeblood of officialdom. The time has come for them too to enjoy the benefits of their sweat, tears, and blood. They can do so only if our leaders provide the requisite leadership that will improve living conditions. How long must we wait in agony?
Editor: Mr Louis Owusu